Softball: Norwich splits 2018 home finale with Lasell

Makenna Wade vs. Rivier


NORTHFIELD, Vt. – The Norwich University softball team split with Lasell College on Friday afternoon in its 2018 regular season home finale at the NU Softball Field. 

Norwich (9-15, 7-13 GNAC) took Game 1 with a 6-5 come-from-behind victory, but then fell 16-9 in the nightcap to have to settle for a split with the Lasers. Both teams came into Friday's games in a three-way dog fight along with Mount Ida for the eighth and final playoff spot.

Sophomore Makenna Wade (Pensacola, Fla.) went 5-for-8 at the plate with four RBIs to lead the Cadets' offense. Senior Olivia Bussiere (Northfield, Vt.) also went 4-for-7 in her finale home games in the Maroon & Gold. 

Trailing 5-4 in the bottom of the sixth inning, Wade laced a triple to right center field to score to score Madison Miller (Long Lake, N.Y.), who started the inning with a leadoff double down the left field line. 

Freshman Jenna Sprague (Brookfield, Vt.) then knocked home with Wade with the eventual game-winning RBI to lift the Cadets to the crucial win.  Sprague went 2-for-2 at the plate in the first game with a run scored and a RBI. Freshman Brittany Vandergroef (Lodi, N.J.) had two hits and an RBI from the fifth spot. 

Junior Emily Oliver (Sagamore Hills, Ohio) picked up the victory on the mound for her fifth win of the season after going all seven innings and giving up three earned runs while striking out four. She improved to 5-7 on the year.

Lasell (9-25, 8-14 GNAC) jumped out on top 3-0 in the first inning despite only having one hit. Victoria Spellman and Arianna Genovese each had two hits and a RBI to lead the Lasers' offense in the opener. 

In Game 2, Lasell had a quick start again, this time scoring six runs in the first inning highlighted by a towering grand slam to left field by Nicolette Genkos to make it 5-0 at the time. 

The Lasers had another big inning in the top of the fourth scoring seven more runs to take a 14-0 lead on Norwich. Every Lasell starter notched a hit in the second game as the Lasers pounded out 19 hits to Norwich's 17. 

In Game 2, Norwich finally got going in the bottom of the fifth inning facing a mercy-rule situation. The Cadets managed to score seven runs and cut the deficit to 14-9. 

Sprague, Naomi Rinaldo (Middlefield, Conn.), Oliver, Bussiere, Miller and Kaylee Blanchard (Worcester, Mass.) each had two hits in the second game for the Cadets. 

Sprague took the loss in the second game for the Cadets, while Hailey Haskins earned the win, giving up just three earned runs for Lasell. 

Norwich has four more games remaining starting with two big ones at Mount Ida tomorrow at noon. The Cadets could use a sweep to try and solidify their playoff spot. A split will leave things up to Monday's doubleheader vs. Regis.